Is there anything I can do to make surfaces resistant to SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19)?
EPA regulates the claims on pesticide product labels. EPA-registered surface disinfectants kill viruses at the time they are used. After use, if new viral particles come into contact with the surface, a previously applied disinfectant will not protect against these new particles.
EPA has published interim guidance on amending product registrations to add claims of residual efficacy againstr SARS-CoV-2. For more information, see EPA’s list of all products with residual efficacy that can be used against the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19.
There are some antimicrobial pesticides that EPA calls materials preservatives that can be incorporated into articles. Known as “treated articles,” these plastics, textiles or other materials are treated with or contain a materials preservative to protect the article itself from mold or bacteria that can cause odor, discoloration or deterioration.
Treated articles cannot claim that they are effective against viruses and bacteria that cause human illness. This means that they are not appropriate for controlling COVID-19.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that you clean contaminated surfaces with liquid disinfectant products to prevent the spread of disease. Read CDC's recommendations.
View List N: Disinfectants for Use Against SARS-CoV-2.
Learn more about how to protect yourself against COVID-19 by visiting CDC’s website.
Read our infographic on how to use disinfectants safely and effectively.
Return to Frequent Questions about Disinfectants and Coronavirus (COVID-19).
- Can I use common household substances to kill the novel coronavirus?
- How can members of my household use disinfectants properly to control COVID-19 if a family member is asthmatic or has other chronic respiratory disease?
- Can disinfectant products be used on people?
- I need to disinfect a public space like a store or school. What do I need to know?
- Why aren’t ozone generators, UV lights, or air purifiers on List N? Can I use these or other pesticidal devices to kill the virus that causes COVID-19?
- Can I use fogging, fumigation, or electrostatic spraying, or drones to help control COVID-19?
- Can I apply a product using a method that is not specified in the directions for use?
- Do disinfectants kill newer variants of coronavirus?